Historical Studies is more than learning facts, dates and lists of events. It’s an intriguing, challenging, creative and inspiring form of intellectual and practical exploration. At its essence, it helps everyone make better sense of the moments, years and centuries which have led to today’s world.
Studying the past helps us understand the present, and plan for the future.
To understand the past, you must begin by learning from whence we came. You must understand what it was like when European powers encountered Native peoples, why wars were fought over religion, trade, and power, and what led to key political and diplomatic decisions. History addresses the differences which surround us, such as between countries like Canada and the United States, places like Newfoundland and Labrador. It also provides different ways of looking at the past, the many viewpoints of history’s rulers, artists, philosophers, scholars and just “plain folk.”
Our historical studies faculty bring to life the study of Greek, Roman, Medieval, European, North Atlantic, Newfoundland and Canadian history. Their specializations and interests encompass art, national and colonial history, military history, the history of ideas, social and cultural history, and more. What we teach also links to related areas of historical studies, including literary and theatre history, history of science, and social and cultural studies.
The Historical Studies program at Grenfell met all the expectations I had when I chose to attend a smaller university. The small class sizes created an environment of welcomed participation and involvement and the professors were the most encouraging and supportive instructors I have ever had. They are experts in their fields and are passionate about sharing their knowledge. The emphasis placed on teaching students to analyse critically and to think independently has helped me immensely as I moved into my post-graduate studies (Masters of Library and Information Science) where critically evaluating information, from past or present, is key.
Carolynne Gabriel, BA